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Long Run - Newbury 17/02/2012

Long Run: well fancied for Saturday's race

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (  

Big National names remain as eight come out

EIGHT horses came out of the Crabbie's Grand National at Monday's forfeit stage, but ante-post favourite Teaforthree and all the leading contenders stood their ground for Saturday's race.

Roi Du Mee, Katenko, Bog Warrior, Mossey Joe, Godsmejudge, Sunnyhillboy, Same Difference and Goulanes were withdrawn leaving 65 engaged in the Aintree marathon, which boasts prize-money of £1 million for the first time.

The prestigious handicap has a maximum field size of 40 and while market leaders Teaforthree, Long Run, Tidal Bay, Monbeg Dude, Triolo D'Alene and Prince De Beauchene are guaranteed a run, connections of the 25 horses not certain to line up face an anxious wait until Thursday's final declaration stage.

One In A Milan is number 40 on the list followed by Goonyella and Swing Bill. There will be two reserves for the race and they have until 9am on Friday to make the final cut if there are any more defectors.

The going on the National course was changed to good to soft, good in places (from good to soft) on Monday morning following a dry night. Rain is forecast in the early part of the week.

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